PRAYERS FOR THE SICK.
Almighty everlasting God, who with wisdom and fatherly goodness disposest of the destiny of mankind, and directest all things to our highest good, thou hast now laid me on a bed of sickness, and with merciful intention hast sent me a painful trial. Vouchsafe unto me Christian patience, and strengthen my trust in thy goodness, that I may neither be feeble-minded and despondent, nor murmur against thy wise decrees.
Thou art my Father, equally tender both in the time of sickness and in the time of health. I am in thy hands, and thou wilt not forsake thy servant at a moment when he standeth in such sore need of thy assistance. Dispose of me according to thy holy pleasure. My will through life, both in suffering and in death, shall be one with thine.
With childlike resignation I will bear whatever pain or suffering thou sendest me. Only support me with thy grace, and come to the rescue of my weakness. Without thee can I do nothing; strengthen thou me, thou that art the stay of the weak.
O dearest Saviour! During thy life on earth thou didst exhibit thy power and goodness to many in sickness and affliction who believed on thee. In this same faith I call to thee. Jesu, thou Son of David, have mercy on me. Hear me according to thy boundless mercy, and send me health again, that I may resume the occupation of my calling, and work in thy service. Then will I work out my own improvement with greater zeal than heretofore, and consecrate all the days of my life to thee in true fulfilment of my duty.
Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me: nevertheless not my will but thine be done. Restore me to life again, if a longer life is more beneficial to me than death. But if thou hast decreed in thy wisdom to summon me away from this earth, I bow myself humbly under thy strong hand. I know it. Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither hath entered into the heart of man what God hath prepared for them that love him. Lord, I love thee with my whole heart. Assist me, that I may continue and ever increase in this love, until I can say with the apostle, “I could wish to depart and be with Christ.”
Father, into thy hands I commend my spirit.
Jesus, I love thee; Jesus, I die to thee; Jesus, I am thine in life and death.
BEFORE THE RECEPTION OF THE SACRAMENTS.
My Lord and Saviour! thou hast appointed the means of grace, by which thou makest us partakers of the fruit of thy redemption, and givest strength and consolation to the sick. Let them also redound to my salvation, and assist me, that I may worthily receive the holy sacraments, and through them may be made inwardly one with thee. Enlighten my understanding, that I may rightly apprehend the condition of my soul. Touch and awaken my heart, that I may truly repent of all the sins and negligences of my whole life, and may confess them with true submission, and a firm trust in thy mercy; and that I may obtain absolution through thy merits, who hast offered thyself on the cross for the sins of the whole world. Assist me also that, as thou wilt deign to take up thy abode under my roof, I may receive thee with humble trust and thankful love, remembering thy words; “This is the bread which cometh down from heaven, that a man may eat thereof, and not die. If any man eat of this bread, he shall live for ever.” (Fulfil also in me what thou hast promised, “Is any sick among you? let him call for the elders of the Church; and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord: and the prayer of faith shall save the sick, and the Lord shall raise him up; and if he have committed sins, they shall be forgiven him.”) Behold, I follow thy loving invitation; “Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.” Prove thyself to me as him who is come neither to break the bruised reed, nor to quench the smoking flax, as him whom God has given in order that all who believe on him should not perish, but have everlasting life.
Heavenly Father, Omniscient God, who seest through all the thoughts of my heart, I confess before thee; I have sinned, I have sinned often against thee, my best Benefactor, my kindest Father, and my highest Good. It repenteth me from the depths of my heart, that in my actions I have been so unthankful towards thee, so blind and foolish towards myself, so unloving and unrighteous towards my neighbour. I should have followed thy holy will in all things. But I have acted in a contrary way, and have done what thou hast forbidden. O Father, thou seest the pain which afflicts me, and the shame which fills me. Not only from fear of punishment, but also from love for thee, I hate and abhor my sins as the greatest evil, and I renounce them utterly before thy holy gaze. Forgive thy weak child, forgive me all my sins for Jesus’ sake. Forthwith will I endeavour to avoid all sin, to serve thee truly, to fulfil all my duties conscientiously, and to become daily more like my Saviour. O God, grant me thy grace to accomplish this.
O Jesu, thou Saviour of the world, thou who art come to seek and to save that which was lost, graciously regard my repentance and my resolution, and speak to me also those words of comfort which thou hast spoken to the sick man in the Gospel, “my son, be of good cheer, thy sins are forgiven thee.”
I believe, O Lord, that thou art Christ, the Son of the living God, the Saviour of the world. I believe all that thou hast taught, for thou hast the words of eternal life. I believe that thou hast died for our sins, and by thy death hast reconciled us to thy heavenly Father. I believe the words which thou hast spoken, “I am the living bread which came down from heaven: if any man eat of this bread, he shall live for ever: and the bread that I will give is my flesh, which I will give for the life of the world. He that eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, dwelleth in me, and I in him.”
I place my hope, O Lord, in thy goodness and mercy. I trust that thou hast graciously forgiven me my sins, and that thou wilt fulfil in me thy promise; “He that eateth of this bread shall live for ever.”
I thank thee, O Lord, for all thy clemency, and all thy mercy.
I love thee above all things; for thou art my Redeemer and Saviour, my consolation and my help.
Thou hast said; “Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will refresh you.” So refresh me, as full of trust I have recourse to thee.
The Body of our Lord Jesus Christ preserve my soul unto everlasting life.
Almighty and everlasting God, behold I approach the sacrament of thy only-begotten Son, our Lord Jesus Christ. As one sick I come to the physician of life, as blind to the light of eternal splendour, as poor and needy to the Lord of heaven and earth. I implore thee, therefore, after thine infinite mercy, that thou wouldest heal my sickness, lighten my darkness, enrich my poverty, and clothe my nakedness, that I may receive the bread of angels, the King of kings, and Lord of lords, with such reverence and fear, such contrition and devotion, such faith and purity as is expedient for the welfare of my soul. Grant me, O Lord, to receive not only outwardly the sacrament of the Body and Blood of Jesus Christ, but also inwardly the power and effects of this sacrament. O God of love and clemency, grant me so to receive the Body of thy only-begotten Son, that I may be incorporated in his mystical Body, and be reckoned among his members. Grant that him whom I now prepare myself to receive during this life’s journey veiled under the form of bread, even thy beloved Son, I may hereafter behold with open face, who with thee, and the Holy Ghost, liveth and reigneth, God for evermore. Amen.
I thank thee, my Lord and Saviour, that in the fulness of thy mercy thou hast deigned to visit me. Abide thou in me, and let me abide in thee. Help me that nothing more may ever separate me from thy love. Keep far from my heart all that is displeasing to thee. Assist me to bear patiently the pains of my sickness. Shew thyself to be the heavenly physician both of soul and body, and restore health to me if it tends to my salvation. All the days that thou yet shalt send me will I spend in thy love and service. But if thou hast otherwise decreed in thy wisdom, yet fulfil in me thy promise, “Whoso eateth of this bread shall live for ever.”
I thank thee, Lord, that I have found
Thee whom my soul doth seek,
Who givest health unto the sick,
And strength unto the weak.
O let me not forsake thee, Lord,
Nor from thy servant part;
But consecrate a dwelling-place
Within my yearning heart.
For thou alone throughout my life
My Lord and King shalt be;
Ne’er let me own another god,
Nor separate from thee.
PRAYER OF A DYING PERSON.
I pray to thee, O true and living God. I believe in thee, O eternal Truth. My hopes are fixed on thee, thou endless Good and Mercy. I love thee with my whole heart above all things, O my kindest Father, my highest Good.
I repent of all my sins. O God, have mercy on me, for thy beloved Son Jesus’ sake.
O Jesus, have pity on thy servant, whom thou hast redeemed by thy blood. I die trusting in thy boundless merit.
Jesus, I believe in thee; Jesus, I hope in thee; Jesus, I love thee above everything.
Come, O Jesus, deliver me; come, O Jesus, strengthen me; come, O Jesus, and bear me into thy kingdom.
Father, into thy hands I commend my spirit.
Lord Jesus, receive my spirit.
PRAYER ON BEHALF OF A DYING PERSON.
Almighty, everlasting God, who art nigh to help all that are in danger and necessity, we beseech thee, in deep humility, that thou wouldest come to help this thy servant in his extreme need; strengthen him in his death agony, and convey his soul into everlasting happiness.
Look, O most merciful Creator, with the eye of pity upon our dying brother, and comfort the soul which thou hast made; that being cleansed from all its sins, it may be received into eternal glory.
Merciful God, who lovest the souls of men, and for their good dost chasten them with temporal punishment, we beseech thee let thy fatherly love and divine consolation be imparted to the soul of thy servant, now wrestling with the pangs of death; that being purified at his decease, he may be borne by the hands of holy angels to thee, his Creator.
O God, receive thy servant into the dwelling-place of joy, as he hath hoped, trusting in thy mercy.
We commend to thee, O Lord, the soul of thy servant; that now being dead to this world, he may live unto thee, and that in thy boundless goodness and pity thou mayest forgive him those sins which out of human weakness he hath committed during his life on earth; through Christ our Lord. Amen.
PASSAGES FROM HOLY SCRIPTURE.
“God so loved the world, that he gave his Only-begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.”—S.John iii. 16, 17.
“I am the bread of life: he that cometh to me shall never hunger, and he that believeth on me shall never thirst. All that the Father giveth me shall come to me; and him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out.”—S.John vi. 35, 37.
“I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life.”— S.John viii. 12.
“Verily, verily, I say unto you, If a man keep my saying he shall never see death.”—S.John viii. 51.
“I am the good shepherd: the good shepherd giveth his life for the sheep. My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me; and I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand.”—S.John x. 11, 27, 28.
“I am the resurrection and the life; he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live: and whosoever liveth and believeth in me shall never die.”—S.John xi. 25, 26.
“Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me. In my Father’s house are many mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also.”—S.John xiv. 1—3.
 [Throughout the following prayers, now for the first time published for optional use, though claiming no official authority, there is an entire absence of any allusion either to the merits, or even to the intercession of the B.V. M. and the saints. Contrast the corresponding devotions in such popular Roman Catholic manuals as “The Garden of the Soul,” &c.]
 Phil. i. 23.
 S. John vi. 50, 51.
 S. James v. 14, 15.
 S. Matt. xi. 28.
 S. John vi. 51, 56.
 S. John vi. 58.
 S. Matt. xi. 28.